Introduction to DCPS


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An introduction to the District of Columbia Public Schools.

Note: not officially endorsed by DCPS

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  • Control given to Mayor Fenty on June 1, 2007 after President Bush signed the DC Home Rule Charter Act amendment 2080 Michelle Rhee appointed on June 12
  • We will engage schools listed as proficient under NCLB in a cycle of continuous improvement, which will include enhancing our co-curricular and extracurricular offerings, providing thematic programs, and expanding higher level course offerings. We will engage schools listed as underperforming under NCLB in one or more of the following four change approaches: Aggressive improvement , which will include intensive professional development for teachers and intensive academic supports for students (e.g., Saturday school, extended-day programs, ninth-grade academies, tiered curriculum interventions). Reconstitution , which will include hiring school turnaround leaders and new teachers to fundamentally change the culture of a school. Conversion to a partnership school, which will entail handing the operation of a school to an educational partner, such as an Educational Management Organization, under a performance contract with DCPS. Closure . We will close schools that persistently underperform, despite our efforts at aggressive improvement.
  • Elementary schools- aggressive focus on teacher professional development and early literacy (at grade level by 3 rd grade) Middle Schools- 80% began in PI-5 and PI-4 status -> much reconstitution and conversion, create PK-8 schools by adding a grade to elementary schools each year, add intensive academic support via extended day programs and Sat. school and in-school tutoring. High Schools- All were in PI-5 status in early 2008 -> reconstitution and conversion in stages, intensive academic support, AP courses, extracurriculars, “themed” schools (Arts Integration, STEM, World Language and Culture x15) (a) Budget Autonomy: These schools may allocate site budgets as they desire, so long as they satisfy applicable compliance and/or regulatory concerns. (b) Instructional Autonomy: Within the context of the Teaching and Learning Framework, these schools may create and implement an instructional program, with particular focus or themes of their own choosing. (c) Professional Development Autonomy: These schools may participate in and create their own school-based professional development. (d) Curricular Autonomy: When DCPS adopts new curricular materials, autonomous schools will receive a commensurate amount of financial resources to conduct their own adoptions. (e) Schedule Autonomy: Within the parameters of the WTU contract, these schools may create their own schedules.
  • Also in NYC and Chicago. In association with Harvard’s economic prof. Dr. Fryer
  • Introduction to DCPS

    1. 1. November 10, 2009 Introduction to DC Pubic Schools GUMSHOE Co-Director Lin Yang
    2. 2. Our Common Purpose The shared goal of these thousands of people is to make DCPS the highest performing urban school district in the nation, and to once and for all close the achievement gap that separates low-income students and students of color from their higher-income and white peers.
    3. 3. What We Believe All children, regardless of background or circumstance, can achieve at the highest levels. Achievement is a function of effort, not innate ability. We have the power and the responsibility to close the achievement gap. Our schools must be caring and supportive environments. It is critical to engage our students’ families and communities as valued partners. Our decisions at all levels must be guided by robust data.
    4. 4. DCPS 2009-2010 Portfolio 1,950 46,222 8 Youth Engagement Total Enrollment 596 6 Special Education School 12,512 17 High School 4,590 13 Middle School 20,230 66 Elementary School 6,344 19 Education Campus Official Enrollment Schools School Type
    5. 5. Student Demographics 9.3% 7% English Language Learners NA 70% Free/Reduced Meals NA 20% Special Education 7% 7% White 0% 0% Native American 2% 2% Asian/Pacific Islander 12% 12% Hispanic 79% 79% Black SY 08-09 SY 07-08
    6. 6. National Assessment of Educational Progress
    7. 7. Graduation Rates In early 2008, only 43 percent of students who enroll as ninth-graders in DCPS schools graduate within five years . Only 9 percent of that same cohort graduate from college within five years of matriculation.
    8. 8. 2009-2010 DCPS Budget Expenses were $820.5 million, against available funding of $779.5 million. The budget shortfall for FY 2010 was $43.9 million . The shortfall was caused by: summer reductions (in June and August)—$20.5 million additional school-level resources—$20.5 million costs associated with separated employees—approximately $3 million
    9. 9. Employee Severances Six weeks into the 2009-2010 school year, in order to balance the fiscal budget, DCPS was forced to several contracts with 388 employees. 388    Total 81 Assistant principals, counselor and other staff that work directly with students but not assigned to classrooms Student Support Staff   59 Clerks, registrars, business managers and other administrative staff assigned to school offices Office Staff 19 Custodial foreman and custodians Custodial Staff 229 Classroom teachers Teachers   Number of Staff Separated Description
    10. 10. No Child Left Behind DC Public Schools are evaluated each year based on the 2002 No Child Left Behind Act. NCLB is based on the belief that setting high standards and establishing measurable goals can improve individual educational outcomes .
    11. 12. Capital Gains Program In 2008, DCPS partnered with Professor Fryer of Harvard University to create financial incentives to reward student performance . Fifteen middle schools enrolled in the two-year pilot. Teachers award students points based on five areas including attendance, behavior and achievement . Every two weeks, points are totaled and converted to dollars (approx. $2 per point ). All students have individual bank accounts where the money is saved.
    12. 14. DC Student Enrollment